What to do if you get pulled out to sea

Updated: May. 31, 2019 at 10:20 PM CDT
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CAMERON PARISH, La. (KPLC) - With several water-related incidents in the past few weeks, authorities want you to know what to do if you get pulled out to sea.

“If there is an undertow or wave action, it’s easy to get too far out," Cameron Parish Sheriff Ron Johnson said. "We have to keep in mind that although that water, although the waves look like they are coming in, and it does, that water is actually going back to the gulf. You will get out there quicker than you know. Especially young kids.”

With no lifeguards at any of the beaches in Cameron Parish, Johnson says those going into the water, especially younger children, need to be safe.

Back in April, 4 teens were rescued by the Coast Guard and Cameron firefighters off of Long Beach.

And just this week, a Cameron Parish Deputy and several bystanders helped rescue two kids off Mae’s Beach.

“This was people watching out for people," Johnson said. "That’s what made the difference. If you’re on the beach by yourself that would have been a different story.”

Johnson says to keep a few things in mind as you head to the beach this summer: bring a friend and flotation devices and check weather conditions.

If you do find yourself being pulled out to sea: Stay calm. Call and wave for help. If you think you can, swim parallel to shore, then following breaking waves back to shore at an angle. If you don’t think you can get back to shore, float to conserve energy until you get rescued.

Johnson says being prepared and being aware are key and could be the difference between life and death.

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